Way of Life Literature

 

Publisher of Bible Study Materials

Friday Church News Notes
Volume 20, Issue 50 - December 13, 2019
Graphical Edition
The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.
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HILLSONG TO HOST ALPHA CONFERENCE/CATHOLIC MASS (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - Hillsong Phoenix is hosting Alpha Conference 2020 on January 30-31, complete with a Catholic mass. Speakers include Sarah Shin of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, Francis Chan, Kelvin Walker of the Christian & Missionary Alliance, Catholic priest James Mallon, and contemporary worship leader Matt Redman. The conference opens on Friday morning with a Catholic mass in which a wafer of bread will become the actual body and blood of Jesus and will be worshipped as Jesus by the participants, according to official Catholic doctrine. Alpha is an interdenominational evangelistic program that was birthed in the 1990s at Holy Trinity Brompton Anglican Church in London, England, from a charismatic “revival” in which people experienced “massive electricity going through” their bodies, were thrown across rooms by spiritual forces, howled, laughed like hyenas, lay on the floor with their feet in the air, and were “drunk.” The Alpha course includes a “Holy Spirit Day” with the objective of bringing the participants into a charismatic experience, including teaching them how to speak in “tongues.” Alpha is helping to build the end-time, one-world “church.” Developer Nicky Gumble, vicar of Holy Trinity Brompton, says, “Alpha runs in every arm of the Church. It’s growing the fastest in the Catholic church. ... What unites us is infinitely greater than what divides us. ... In every different part of the body of Christ--Presbyterian, Baptist, Lutheran, non-denominational, Catholic, Pentecostals, Bulgarian Orthodox, Coptic Orthodox--Alpha crosses all divides” (“The Alpha Course: An International Phenomenon,” WillowCreek.org, March 2012). Hillsong is a network of churches and an influential producer of contemporary worship music. It began at Hills Christian Life Centre in Sydney, Australia, and has branched out to start churches in London, New York City, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and other cities. Popular Hillsong songs include “Oceans,” “Shout to the Lord,” “Stronger,” “This Is Our God,” and “Mighty to Save.”

SALVATION ARMY LEADER MEETS WITH POPE FRANCIS TO PROMOTE ECUMENICAL COOPERATION (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - World leader of the Salvation Army, Brian Peddle, met with Pope Francis in Rome on November 8 to express ecumenical oneness and joint efforts to save the world through social action. The pope said, “Holiness transcends denominational boundaries. ... Catholics and Salvationists can increasingly assist one another and cooperate in a spirit of mutual respect” (“Pope asks Catholics, Salvation Amy to spread God’s love through service,” Crux, Nov. 8, 2019). The previous Salvation Army General, André Cox, was the first Salvation Army leader to visit the pope. During the 2014 visit, the pope said, “The differences between Catholics and Salvationists regarding theological and ecclesiological questions need not impede the witness of our shared love of God and love of neighbour.” The Salvation Army was founded in the 1800s by William and Catherine Booth for the purpose of preaching the gospel and assisting the needy. It is basically Methodist in doctrine and preaches a “holding out faithful” salvation and sinless perfection sanctification. “... continuance in a state of salvation depends upon continued obedient faith in Christ. ... it is the privilege of all believers to be wholly sanctified” (“Doctrines of the Salvation Army”). The Salvation Army does not practice baptism or the Lord’s Supper. Ecumenism and social welfare have long dominated the organization’s agenda.

AUSTRALIAN RUGBY STAR SACKED FOR POSTING A BIBLE MESSAGE REACHED A SETTLEMENT IN LAWSUIT (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Vindicated: Australian Rugby Star,” The Stream, Dec. 5, 2019: “Israel ‘Izzy’ Folau, Australian Rugby player who was sacked because he posted a Christian message on Instagram, reached a settlement Wednesday in a lawsuit he filed for unfair firing from the team. Although Folau originally sought $14 million, the terms of the settlement remain confidential. ... Rugby Australia and Rugby NSW also apologized to Israel for sacking him and any ‘hurt or harm’ the firing caused. ... ‘We are extremely pleased with the settlement reached today,’ Folau continued. ‘With today’s acknowledgment and apology by Rugby Australia, we have been vindicated and can now move on with our lives to focus on our faith and our family. ... I believe in a God that’s in control of all things. Whatever His will is, whether that’s to continue playing or not, I’m more than happy to do what He wants me to do.’ ... Earlier this year, Folau posted a statement on Instagram that is based on 1 Corinthians 6:9-10. It stated, ‘Warning. Drunks, Homosexuals, Adulterers, Liars, Fornicators, Thieves, Atheists, Idolaters. Hell Awaits You. Repent! Only Jesus Saves.’ ... Folau said, ‘First and foremost, I live for God now. Whatever He wants me to do, I believe His plans for me are better than whatever I can think. If that’s not to continue on playing, so be it.’”

MARGARET SANGER: FEMINIST FOUNDER OF PLANNED PARENTHOOD (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from David Horowitz’s Dark Agenda: The War to Destroy Christian America, 2018: “Margaret Sanger belonged to a group of leftists who were also associated with the creation of the American Civil Liberties Union. The most prominent figure in this radical circle was Emma Goldman, known as ‘Red Emma.’ Goldman was a revolutionary who had plotted with her lover to assassinate Henry Clay Frick, chairman of the Carnegie Steel Company. The plot failed, and she was deported to the Soviet Union. In her own mind, Sanger, too, was a revolutionary, openly proclaiming that birth control was the means by which she intended to change the world. In March 1914, Sanger launched a monthly newspaper, the Woman Rebel, which promoted not only contraception but moral and political anarchy. The paper’s motto was ‘No gods, no masters!’ ... In a 1930 profile of Sanger in The New Yorker, writer Helena Huntington Smith noted that the Woman Rebel ... mixed its birth-control propaganda with a good deal of red-flag-waving, and perorations of the ‘Workers of the World, Arise!’ variety. She printed rousing contributions entitled ‘A Defense of Assassination’ and ‘The Song of the Bomb,’ and composed an editorial declaring: ‘Even if dynamite were to serve no other purpose than to call forth the spirit of revolutionary solidarity and loyalty, it would prove its great value.’ ... Her 1920 book, Woman and the New Race, was a manifesto of her revolutionary program to change the world. ... Margaret Sanger belonged to the company of self-appointed social redeemers. A eugenicist, she believed that the world’s problems—poverty, hunger, war—stemmed from the ‘fit’ having too few children and the ‘unfit’ having too many. The ‘unfit’ were people of the lower classes and races she regarded as inferior. The disastrous situation that uncontrolled births created could be remedied, she believed, if people could be bred like animals with an eye to improving the species. ... Sanger believed that salvation lay in ‘liberating’ women by endowing them with ‘reproductive freedom’ ... She wrote, ‘Even as birth control is the means by which woman attains basic freedom, so it is the means by which she must and will uproot the evil she has wrought through her submission.’ She based the title of her 1922 book The Pivot of Civilization on the notion that birth control is the pivot or turning point by which civilization can move from barbarism and disaster to future rationality and well-being. Such delusional world-transforming ambitions lie at the heart of every radical cause and fuel the extremist energies and beliefs. ‘Reproductive freedom’—with its implications of world-transforming consequences—is still the rallying cry of the women’s movement Sanger inspired.”

SOCIAL MEDIA AND EVIL COMMUNICATIONS (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - In a nutshell, the main danger of the Internet in general and social media in particular is evil communications. “Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners” (1 Co. 15:33). Evil communications refer to any kind of associations, relationships, communion, conversation, and fellowship that is evil, bad, wrong, or harmful by the standard of God’s Word. “Evil” is the Greek kakos, the standard New Testament word for evil. It is usually translated “evil.” It is also translated “wicked” (Mt. 21:41), “harm” (Ac. 16:28), “ill” (Ro. 13:10), “noisome” (Re. 16:2). Evil is anything that is contrary to God’s standard of righteousness and holiness, anything that is contrary to God’s will. God’s standard for His redeemed people is very high. “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from ALL filthiness of the flesh and spirit, PERFECTING holiness in the fear of God” (2 Co. 7:1). “Communications” is homilia, “to converse, to have companionship.” It is from homileo, meaning “a multitude, a crowd, a company.” It is translated “talked together” (Lu. 24:14) and “communed together” (Lu. 24:15). “Good manners” is chrestos (profitable, fit, good for any use) and ethos (custom, habit, morals, character). It refers to the right way of living and thinking. “Corrupt” is phthero, “to waste, pine, destroy, spoil.” It is translated “defile” and “destroy” (1 Co. 3:17). It is used for the corruption of the mind by false doctrine (2 Co. 11:3). The Bible warns, therefore, that any association or company or communion with evil corrupts and spoils the right and biblical way of Christian living and thinking. God’s Word says, “Be not deceived” on this point. You are not an exception. If you associate with, commune with, company with, converse with evil, you will most definitely be injured by it. The word homilia--communion, companionship, a crowd, a company--is a precise definition for social media! There has never been a more powerful forum for evil communications in the history of this fallen world. Let God’s people take heed! On the positive side, 1 Corinthians 15:33 calls for a testing mindset. It is an unequivocal divine commandment to judge everything by the standard of whether or not it is an evil communication and to avoid everything that fits that standard. This is contrary to the “judge not, be tolerant, mind your own business” thinking that is predominate within 21st century Christianity.

PRAY FOR AMERICA (Friday Church News Notes, December 13, 2019, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - Prayer is the only thing that can have a significant effect on America’s terrible spiritual and moral condition. Almighty God, who is in control of all earthly authorities, has specifically instructed His people to pray for their governments. Surely, we can pray such a prayer in perfect faith that He will answer and help us. “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty” (1 Timothy 2:1-2).

CONCLUSION: The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, but this obviously does not imply an endorsement. We trust that our readers will not be discouraged. It is God’s will that we know the times (1 Ch. 12:32; Mat. 16:3) and that we be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves. The News Notes remind us that the hour is very late, and we need to be ready for the Lord’s coming. Are you sure that you are born again? Are you living for Christ? “And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Rom. 13:11-14).

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Distributed by Way of Life Literature., publisher of Bible Study Materials and reports for Fundamental Baptists and other fundamentalist, Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. OUR GOAL IN THIS PARTICULAR ASPECT OF OUR MINISTRY (REPORTS AND FRIDAY NEWS) IS NOT DEVOTIONAL. IS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO ASSIST PREACHERS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE CHURCHES IN THIS APOSTATE HOUR.

David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org

The Way of Life Literature preaching and publishing ministry is based at Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. A mail stop is maintained in Port Huron, Michigan.

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